Help: making Macports Python installation work with an older version of Tcl

Tom Baldwin tbaldwin at
Fri Jul 10 13:24:55 PDT 2009

Thank you Frank! Recompiling python25 was the step I missed.

Ryan, I must have missed your wiki page in my initial googling. I wish I had
found it then, because it would have helped me a lot. I actually did at one
point check out the last revision of Tcl 8.4 with svn, several days ago, but
macports kept installing 8.5, and I didn't know why.

This was because I initially inserted my local repository location
*after*the rsync url in sources.conf. Basic mistake, I now know, but I
was clueless
at the time. Had I just switched them I would have had it!

Thank you all for helping orient me to macports.

On Fri, Jul 10, 2009 at 12:13 PM, Frank Schima <macsforever2000 at
> wrote:

> Hi Tom,
> Please use reply-all so that the list gets a copy too.
> On Jul 10, 2009, at 12:13 PM, Tom Baldwin wrote:
> On Fri, Jul 10, 2009 at 7:47 AM, Frank Schima <
> macsforever2000 at> wrote:
>> On Jul 9, 2009, at 7:37 PM, Tom Baldwin wrote:
>>  Hello everyone,
>>> I am seeking some help with a problem I am having running macports.
>>> When Macports installs Python, it updates Tcl and Tk to the latest
>>> version (8.5) as a dependency. For compatibility reasons, I want this Python
>>> installation to work with Tcl/Tk version 8.4 instead. By commanding "port
>>> deactivate Tcl" and "port deactivate Tk" I can restore these to what I had
>>> before: commanding "tclsh" and then entering "info patchlevel" at the prompt
>>> confirms that the version is now back to 8.4. I assume this is the version
>>> which comes preinstalled on the mac.
>>> However, when I go back to my python installation and "import Tkinter",
>>> it fails. How can I get my macports-installed Python version to work with
>>> Tcl and Tk which were not installed by macports?
>>> Thank you for your help.
>>> TkB
>> MacPorts is not designed to work with built-in Mac OS X libraries [1].
>> However, I have the same requirement because I use the blt port. What I do
>> is replace my local tcl and tk portfiles with the latest 8.4.x versions. See
>> ticket #14488 [2] where I have attached those versions of the portfiles.
> Thank you for showing me this ticket, it was just what I was looking for.
> Using your alternate portfiles for tcl and tk, I was able to install version
> 8.4 of both.
> However, using your portfile for py25-tkinter fails for me since it cannot
> find This was mentioned in the thread [1] but it's not clear to me
> how it was resolved. Do you know why this is? I replaced the two tcl
> libraries as is mentioned, but I think that had more to do with the runtime
> errors mentioned in comment #10. I did skip the xorg / blt stuff, since I
> don't think I need that just to run Tkinter from python.
> [1] <>
> I really appreciate your help. Thanks so much.
> TkB
> You don't need the py25-tkinter port anymore due to recent changes in
> python25. I should note that in the ticket - or better yet, make a wiki page
> about this. Make sure you have the latest python25 portfile (with "sudo port
> selfupdate"). In any event, you will have to rebuild your python port after
> installing tcl/tk 8.4.
> Cheers!
> Frank
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